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GameSetWatch.com is the alt.video game weblog and sister site of Gamasutra.com. It is dedicated to collecting curious links and media for offbeat and oft-ignored games from consoles old and new, as well as from the digital download, iOS, and indie spaces.

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Archive For October, 2011

Zombie Panic In iOS-Land

October 31, 2011 9:00 PM | Eric Caoili

More and more developers that have released their titles to Nintendo's download platforms are porting them to iOS lately (e.g. WayForward's Shantae: Risky's Revenge, Powerhead's Glow Artisan), the latest being Zombie Panic in Wonderlandi, which debuted on WiiWare last year.

Spanish indie studio Akaoni posted this teaser image of Zombie Panic in Wonderland Plus, and says it's hoping to release the iOS version in time for Christmas. The photo shows a 0.2 beta build on an iPhone 3G -- so no worries about this being game for only 3GS-and-newer devices.

I'm unsure what extra content that Plus in the title entails, but the original was a pretty fun on-rails shooter featuring fable characters (Snow White, Alice, Little Red Riding Hood, etc.) blasting the undead. The premise is similar to Little Red Riding Hood's Zombie BBQ, which also needs an iOS port!

Vigo The Kinect-Powered Painting

October 31, 2011 6:00 PM | Eric Caoili

Sunlight Labs' Eric Mill decided to make something strange in his neighborhood with this fun hack of Ghostbusters II's haunted Vigo the Carpathian painting, the one that showed the fictional tyrant's intense gaze that looked like it was watching (or even spying on) Sigourney Weaver.

Mill used an LCD to display Vigo -- the Scourge of Carpathia, the Sorrow of Moldavia -- and Microsoft's Kinect motion-sensing device to have the villain's eyes follow passerbys:

"Making this happen was surprisingly simple, and only took a single work day for us to create from scratch. Vigo's eyes are controlled by Processing, which is getting data fed to it by the Kinect perched atop the TV. 

With a bit of Photoshop help from my fellow Sunlighters, it wasn't hard at all for me to take Vigo's possession methodology into the 21st century."

He's posted instructions and the Processing code on Sunlight's blog, too, so if you want to rush and create something for your Halloween festivities tonight, you can!

[Via Hack a Day]

Minibosses Release Free Halloween Album

October 31, 2011 3:00 PM | Eric Caoili

Minibosses, a staple in the video games rock/metal covers scene for years now, has put out a free 7-track Halloween album that pays tribute to legendary horror filmmaker John Carpenter (Halloween series, They Live, Christine, The Thing, Village of the Damned).

The track titles allude to some memorable NES games, too: "The Legend of Hallowbike", "Faxanaboo", "Goonies R Dead Enough", "The Shape Stalks Ikari", etc. Grab the MP3s or WAVs here, and if you haven't yet, you can download the band's album Brass for free here, too.

[Via Nobuoo]

Lollipop Chainsaw's Halloween Trailer Full Of Blood, Female Pejoratives

October 31, 2011 12:00 PM | Eric Caoili

In honor of the holiday -- and starting off our Halloween-themed posts today -- Grasshopper/WBIE/Kadokawa put out a new Grindhouse-style trailer for Lollipop Chainsaw that's "full of blood, skin, and severed heads", which is probably exactly what you'd expect from a Suda51-directed game.

There's also plenty of vulgarity to add to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 game's edginess, including one scene that has a villain calling the zombie-slaying, chainsaw-revving cheerleader heroine Juliet Starling a "fuckin' bitch'", going so far as to insert the text on the screen with letters in all caps.

You would think that after all the controversy over in-game characters calling females like Catwoman and Harley Quinn the b-word in Batman: Arkham City, another Warner Bros. published game, the publisher would have avoided calling women in its games that for a while, or at least not emphasize it so!

Or maybe this is a new mandate from WB management to all its internal and partner studios, like from here on out, all its future games need to use the word: Gotham City Impostors, Witcher 2, and Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster -- no virtual woman, even in muppet form, is safe from the term.

[Via WBIE Australia]

Reminder: 2012 IGF Student Competition Submissions Close Today

October 31, 2011 11:28 AM | Full Administrator

IGF2012.jpgOrganizers are reminding that there are less than 24 hours until the Student Competition deadline for the 2012 Independent Games Festival, being held at the Game Developers Conference 2012 in San Francisco next March 5-9.

The Independent Games Festival is the longest-running and highest-profile independent video game festival, summit, and showcase, and the deadline for the IGF 2012 Student Competition is Monday, October 31st at 11:59pm PT.

The IGF has already revealed record numbers of entrants for the Main Competition, with nearly 570 games competing, a more than forty five percent jump over 2011's total entries.

Student Competition finalists will be announced in January 2012, and will be available in playable form at the IGF Pavilion on the GDC show floor from March 7-9, 2012.

Notable former student game finalists include Narbacular Drop, the precursor to the acclaimed Portal, as well as Cloud from the embryonic Thatgamecompany team, recent cult hit Octodad, and more.

Newly submitted student titles will compete for $7,000 in prizes, which includes prizes for eight Student Showcase Winners and one prize for Best Student Game. 2012 Independent Games Festival prizes for both Main and Student Competitions total more than $50,000.

As noted above, submissions to the Student Competition are still open to all student game developers, with many entrants waiting until the last minute to polish versions of their game for more than 150 IGF judges. A full list of student entrants will be released on the IGF website in the days following the submission deadline, as also happened with the Main Competition.

How To One-Life Clear Metal Slug Without Pressing Up Or Down

October 31, 2011 9:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Ever try to play Metal Slug without pressing up or down on the joystick? You wouldn't think the handicap makes much of a difference -- the majority the game scrolls from left to right, after all -- but bombardments from overhead enemies and the occasional vertical climb make it quite the task.

The video above, recorded by "JOSHF," shows Metal Slug played from start to finish with the up and down directional inputs disabled. Oh, and it's done on one life.

JOSHF's playthrough shows off some creative uses for special weapons and hand grenades to make up for the lack of maneuverability, along with very generous application of the Metal Slug tank's ability to fire in all directions without pressing up or down. It's quite educational!

ReplayBurners also hosts a series of videos showcasing a no-death, no-grenade Metal Slug run on the hardest difficulty level, if you're looking for a more conventional but equally challenging playthrough.

Konami Bringing Kinect Dancing Sim DanceMasters To Arcades In Japan

October 31, 2011 3:00 AM | Danny Cowan

Apparently laying its long-running Dance Dance Revolution series to rest, Konami announced that its next arcade dancing sim will be a port of its Kinect launch title DanceMasters, known in Japan as DanceEvolution.

Owing more of its gameplay inspiration to Konami's short-lived Para Para Paradise series than Dance Dance Revolution, DanceMasters traces hand and foot movements, challenging players to complete timed cues and sweeping gestures to the beat of a background music track.

While it fared poorly against Harmonix's Dance Central on the Xbox 360, I can see DanceMasters being a better fit for arcades. It's fun in short bursts, and even if it's technically a much shallower game than Dance Central, it's also less simulation-focused and easier to pick up and play for beginners.

A location test for DanceEvolution Arcade was conducted over the weekend in Fukuoka. Konami will announce a release date shortly, pending a positive player response.

[via Andriasang]

Super Mario World's Camera, Explained

October 31, 2011 12:00 AM | Danny Cowan

I never previously devoted much thought to Super Mario World's camera system -- it works so well that you may never notice that it does anything special at all. This short documentary video shows that it's actually quite remarkable, especially for a 20-year-old game.

I really appreciate that the concepts here are all explained in clear terms and in the context of gameplay, without going too much into technical detail. I'd love to see more videos like this focused on similar quirks from classic games.

[via @brandonnn]

Kid With A Bike And Wesker For A Friend

October 30, 2011 9:00 PM | Eric Caoili

Screening at AFI Fest in a few weeks, The Kid With A Bike is a sentimental film set in Belgium and directed by filmmaking brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. The movie centers around an 11-year-old boy named Cyril who's been abandoned by his father but still wants to have him in his life.

Along the way, he befriends a hairdresser named Samantha who takes him in on the weekends, and a teenage delinquent nicknamed Wesker, after Resident Evil antagonist Albert Wesker. As Things To Do In LA points out, he even demonstrates some of the game character's moves in the trailer above!

Torontoist's review of the film notes that Wesker also tries to win Cyril's loyalty with Fanta and PS3 games -- perhaps one of those titles is Resident Evil 5? If you're in the Hollywood Are, you'll be able to catch a screening for The Kid With A Bike at the Egyptian Theatre on November 8 at 8 PM.

Prototyping, Playtesting Vita Minigame Title Frobisher Says

October 30, 2011 9:00 PM | Eric Caoili

The indie talent backing the PlayStation Vita is steadily increasing as the system approaches its US and EU February‭ ‬22‭ ‬release.‭‬ Last month,‭ ‬Everyday Shooter developer Jon Mak shared how Vita's technology allows for interactive music to form the key of‭ ‬Sound Shapes‭' ‬platforming experience.‭‬

The Vita's array of inputs,‭ ‬including its front and rear touch-enabled surfaces,‭ ‬has also grabbed the attention of Honeyslug‭ ‬developer Ricky Haggett,‭ ‬whose games have found their way around events such as Eurogamer's Indie Games Festival and the Indiecade Expo at E3.‭ ‬However,‭ ‬Honeyslug has put everything aside to create microgame collection Frobisher Says‭‬.

Here Haggett speaks with GameSetWatch contributor John Polson on the team's progression of Frobisher Says from a Flash prototype to a handheld console title,‭ ‬on the challenge of communicating to playtesters the required actions on each microgame,‭ ‬and the approachability of the hardware for iOS developers.

How did you get involved with Vita development‭?‬

Earlier this year,‭ ‬we were asked by Sony Europe whether we wanted to submit a proposal for a Playstation Vita showcase app‭ -‬-‭ ‬something which would highlight the unique features of the device.

We had previously attended Sony's Vita presentation to developers,‭ ‬and our main reaction to the device was,‭ "‬Wow, this thing does a lot of different stuff‭!" ‬All the controls of a dual-shock,‭ ‬plus front and rear touchscreens,‭ ‬tilt,‭ ‬accelerometers,‭ ‬front and rear cameras‭ (‬with facial recognition‭)‬,‭ ‬compass,‭ ‬GPS,‭ ‬microphone‭...‬ just thinking about the possibilities was a bit bewildering.‭

Then Dick Hogg‭‬,‭ ‬our collaborator on several other games‭ (‬including Hohokum and Poto‭ & ‬Cabenga‭) ‬suggested making a bewildering game which would use ALL of the inputs‭ ‬--‭ ‬and jump between them at high speed‭! ‬And so Frobisher was born.

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